HBO's Bill MaherWilliam (Bill) MaherBiden to appear on 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon' on Friday Right wing's new-found love for satire and the 'It is only a joke" defense Juan Williams: Biden and Manchin are 2021's most influential politicians MORE cautioned Democrats that running "a campaign based on reparations and concentration camps" will make it "very hard to win the election" against President TrumpDonald TrumpSanders calls out Manchin, Sinema ahead of filibuster showdown Laura Ingraham 'not saying' if she'd support Trump in 2024 The Hill's 12:30 Report: Djokovic may not compete in French Open over vaccine requirement MORE during an episode of "Real Time" on Friday night.
The perspective from Maher came after Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezLawmakers coming under increased threats — sometimes from one another Maryland Democrat announces positive COVID-19 test Colorado Democrat latest House member to test positive for COVID-19 MORE (D-N.Y.) received considerable backlash from both sides of the aisle Tuesday for comparing migrant detention facilities at the border to concentration camps. He also referenced a renewed push by both Democrats on Capitol Hill and some presidential candidates to seriously consider reparations for slavery.
"If you want to run a campaign based on reparations and concentration camps ... then it's going to be very hard to win the election. I'm not saying you can't do it, but very hard to argue that this is helping," Maher said to a smattering of applause from the studio audience.
After liberal radio talk show host Thom Hartmann dismissed the backlash against Ocasio-Cortez, pointing instead to Trump accusing The New York Times of treason, "the penalty for which is death," he said, Maher pushed back with disbelief.
"When we think of concentration camps ... I think of mass graves. I think of experimenting on human people," Maher said.
Several Republican lawmakers and prominent Jewish groups have called on Ocasio-Cortez to apologize for the concentration camp comparison, but she has continued to maintain the application was appropriate, citing "academic consensus."
"We are calling these camps what they are because they fit squarely in an academic consensus and definition," she tweeted to her 4.5 million followers.
Ocasio-Cortez has not visited facilities at the southern border since taking office in January.